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Oxford Mathematician James Maynard has been awarded a 2023 New Horizons Prize for Early-Career Achievements in Mathematics in recognition of his multiple contributions to analytic number theory, and in particular to the distribution of prime numbers. 

James, who recently won the Fields Medal for his work, is recognised as one of the leading figures in the field of number theory. Much of his career has focused on the study of general questions on the distribution of prime numbers and his achievements include settling a long-standing conjecture of Paul Erdős on large gaps between primes and showing the existence of infinitely many primes missing any given digit (for example, 7).

More recently, in joint work with D. Koukoulopoulos he settled the Duffin-Schaeffer conjecture and dramatically improved upon the work of Schmidt concerning simultaneous approximation by rationals with square denominator. Most recently, he published a monumental series of works on the distribution of primes in residue classes which goes beyond what follows from the Generalised Riemann Hypothesis.

James Maynard did his undergraduate studies at Queens' College, Cambridge before moving to Oxford to do a DPhil under the supervision of Roger Heath-Brown where he has spent much of his career to date. He is now a Professor of Number Theory in Oxford and a Supernumerary Fellow at St John's College.

The New Horizons Prize is part of the Breakthrough Prizesthe world’s largest science awards founded by Sergey Brin, Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg, Julia and Yuri Milner, and Anne Wojcicki. The prizes recognise the top scientists in the fields of Life Sciences, Fundamental Physics, and Mathematics.

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